Everything Kills You is a website devoted to a certain flavour of game. If we had to define that flavour in terms of genre we’d probably start with survival and horror (and survival horror, of course), before working our way out to include roguelikes and open world games, with the odd first-person shooter, mainstream RPG and sandbox builder on the extreme margins of our collective interest.
If there’s a trait common to the games we aim to focus on, it’s that they put up a challenge. That doesn’t mean that they’re necessarily difficult or punishing (although they very often are) but that they’re games that require an understanding of more than standard-issue gameplay practices to get the most out of. With survival games that usually means mastering an ever-changing environment in terms of finding and managing resources. With horror games there’s an implicit need to grasp the lore, and where the threat is often an internal one as much as from reanimated corpses. When it comes to roguelikes, the player must often think and adapt quickly to avoid permanent death. With open world games, multiplayer especially, it’s an appreciation of human fears and prejudices that’s required.
Games that pit you against stock aliens, terrorists or goblins, or that put players in bog-standard mortal danger, don’t really interest us all that much. When the threat to virtual well-being exists on multiple levels simultaneously, or is one that is rarely explored in mainstream games, or where the avenues to overcome a threat are many and varied, then there’s a good chance that one of us will want to write about our experiences.
everythingkillsyou.com – Alien 3 on the Game Boy.
Everything Kills You is a blog devoted to survival and sandbox gaming, specifically gameplay where the environment and the seemingly innocuous things within it end up being just as dangerous and thrilling for the player as any antagonist or need to save the world. Since the earliest CRPGs survival has been an important aspect of games, whether the player has had to simply get to the end of a corridor alive, cure a poisoned member of their party or save an entire civilization from extinction. Games however in which the player has to immediately and continuously meet basic physiological needs, such as find food and maintain a shelter, or where a large part of the challenge comes from exploring and taming the environment as opposed to eliminating a terrorist foe, are a relatively new phenomenon. And a welcome one too: Few can deny the sense of relief that comes with seeing the sky lighten in Minecraft and pondering what the morning will bring, having survived a first night under continuous Creeper attack. Just staring beyond the block-filled horizon at the possibilities is a measure of the freedom rarely afforded the modern gamer, who even in the most open of open world games is incessantly badgered with narrative nudges, quest markers, objective lists and secondary tasks. Occasionally we’ll creep over into other genres when specific games feature an element more commonly associated with survival gameplay – for example the post-apocalyptic Fallout series, roguelikes such as Darkest Dungeon and horror adventures in line with Alien: Isolation. Who knows, we might even find a tenuous link with Elite: Dangerous and write about space sims from time to time. For the most part though we’ll be reporting on games in which you typically start with nothing and quickly end up dead – because we’re weird and enjoy that kind of thing.